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ARROW Recap: “Who are You”

BY The Screen Spy Team

Published 6 years ago

ARROW Recap:

By Justin Carter

The DC/CW shows have been pretty great with their returns this week. Supergirl and Flash both offered satisfactory returns to form for their respective seasons, and Legends of Tomorrow came back with a goofy as hell trip to the 1980’s involving George Lucas and a love of film. Arrow thankfully continues the streak, in part by playing with character dynamics that the show doesn’t really explore, and by bringing back one of its main characters to let loose with a new lease on life.

As the midseason finale showed us, Laurel Lance is alive and hanging out in the Bunker when Oliver returns home. According to her, Sara and the Legends saved her life at the hospital as everyone was mourning, then transported her back to their present. It’s not an entirely plausible scenario–multiple characters have died and come back to life in this universe, after all–but there are some logical leaps that Felicity isn’t able to jive with, one of which being that Laurel (who, as some may recall, once had an alcohol addiction) drinks wine at her “homecoming” party. No sooner into her investigation than Laurel reveal her true colors as the Earth-2 Laurel, dubbed the Black Siren, broken out of Team Flash’s pipeline prison courtesy of Prometheus to screw with Oliver’s head.

It’s a good thing that the show doesn’t really take the time to drag out the whole mystery of Laurel not being Laurel. Revealing it before the first commercial break means that Katie Cassidy gets to just have fun as a Laurel who lets her mean side out. There’s a good amount of ambiguity at play with her true motives; while Prometheus is clearly bringing her out to mess with Oliver and Team Arrow even further, it also isn’t entirely inconceivable that she would try to help them catch the guy so she can get out of his orbit alive. As with most metahumans in this universe, all it takes is just a few chance moments for them to go evil. And with Sara herself having been redeemed, along with Captain Cold and Heatwave on Legends, it’s easy to see why Oliver would want to reach out to Siren in the hopes of redeeming her. It isn’t just something that she needs, he needs it because of the guilt he feels over Laurel dying in the first place.

While Oliver’s playing the optimist card, Felicity’s on the other end of the spectrum. It’s understandable, given that Prometheus had just killed her boyfriend, and the woman working with the man who killed him isn’t helping matters either. The show does a good job of putting her and Oliver on the right side when it comes to Laurel; the circumstances may have made her into Black Siren, but she’s also clearly not showing any remorse for those she hurts with her sonic screams. It’s a welcome shift for Felicity, who even diehard fans would admit became incredibly divisive within the last season or two. It’s hard to deny that the arguments  they’ve had over the show’s run weren’t mostly stemming from relationship woes, so it’s nice to see the show move past that and make their problem a legitimate issue.

Likewise, it’s nice to see that Rene gets some fleshed out screen time with Curtis, still stung from his breakup with his husband. While the former has a good Odd Couple dynamic with Rory, he mainly has spent his time ragging on Curtis when the opportunity presents itself. With Mr. Terrific not acting in his usual peppy manner, Rene opts to slowly force Curtis to vent his problems through his usual, snarky way. Doing so adds some much needed texture to their relationship, along with inspiring Curtis to shift his focus towards tech instead of combat. It’s not exactly a point in Curtis’ favor that he’s incredibly smart, but it took him multiple beat downs to understand that he’s not suited for fighting, but that’s just Arrow logic that you sort of have to let slide.

“Who Are You?” is a fun return to an upswing season of Arrow. It’s not as blatant about its table setting for future episodes as Flash or even Legends of Tomorrow have been, but that’s not a knock against it. It feels like a natural episode just content with taking viewers on a good ride and providing some satisfying action.

 

Additional Notes

  • There are some things about Prometheus and Laurel’s lie I’m willing to buy, but how exactly did either of them know about the Legends or the Waverider?
  • “You put your hands like that on me again, I’ll beat your ass.” “Haha, that’s funny…..oh.”
  • So, Talia al Ghul shows up in the flashbacks. This should certainly be interesting for Past Oliver.
  • There’s a woman in Hub City with a sonic screech ability of her own. No clue who she is, either in the show proper or the general DC comics universe, but her introductory dialogue is…not good.
  • Oliver manages to get Adrian Chase as Diggle’s lawyer, and man, they’re not even trying to hide that he’s the Vigilante anymore. (Not that they could, given how intense Josh Segarra is, but still.)

 

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